OBAMA CARE...So this is how liberty dies, with thunderous applause.

Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness. This is a statement of our most basic individual rights. Over the centuries our human rights have been abused and eroded but always one could still say (...most of the time, in this country...) one could mind their own business and be left totally alone to live their life with no interference from anyone. But with this new health care bill, soon everyone will have to pay a fee to the government, or insurance company, for being alive.

...our last tiny bit of absolute liberty will be erased.

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Libertarianism is mostly something that sounds good but really wouldn't work out. I was reading libertarian newspapers which were saying that without social security, people would just have enough money on their own to take care of their retirement. No they wouldn't! People are stupid and most would go on a shopping spree! Libertarians also want to legalize all drugs, so that would definitely be purchased (I am for legalizing marijuana...all drugs? I'm undecided) The people who did save their money would probably end up being robbed by the others, being that the government would just say "tough shit".
You all have taken away my one last hope for happiness. All these years, all I really want is to retreat into the woods, my dog by my side, never to see another homo sapiens again. Y'all are cruel sonza somethins taking away my only hope. For shame.
unless you've figured out how to photosynthesize.

This is why I'm studying horticulture, but I haven't figured out how it would work during a long Vermont winter. I don't fancy being mulched and dormant for 5 to 6 months out of the year.
Simple. Really, really big leaves. Um, behind triple-pane glass.
Going into the wilderness and being a hermit (yes, I've thought about it, though not anymore)--this is possible if there is a wide expanse of open land where a person wouldn't get caught, or where no one cares if you're squatting--otherwise in order to be a hermit you'd have to buy some land and pay taxes, and probably some other expenses from time to time. If you were a squatting hermit and made nor paid no money, you'd probably be in the category of "homeless" and I'm not imagining that homeless people are going to be saddled with a health insurance fee. It seems like a pretty obscure thing to get riled up about when you're only speculating about being a hermit, and as a wilderness dwelling hermit you'd have more pressing matters like where to find food. Why is it that this health care bill, and only this health care bill, would interfere with becoming a hermit?
"Off The Grid: Life on the Mesa"

Filmed just a few years ago. Yes, there are places one can find 'off the grid.' However, these people still need food, water, fuel, supplies to fix their shacks/shelter, cooking supplies, clothes, tools, transportation to get to town, glasses, medicine. Where do they all get it? The film doesn't get too into it, but it seems all or most of them are on government assistance. Or they sell the pot they grow for money.

So how might Ralph or someone else do it without government assistance? You could if you can gather your own water, grow/hunt your own food. You'll be hunting with a bow and arrow unless you can make a gun from a tree branch. You'll be making your own clothes, log cabin or tipi, making your own stone tools or learning metallurgy real fast. Let's say you somehow accomplish all of this and live without having to ever earn or spend a dime ever again.

You are still protected by the police if someone robs you.

You are still reasonably safe from invading countries thanks to our federal military.

The air you're breathing and water you're gathering is relatively clean thanks to the EPA.

This off-the-grid remote location you've chosen is almost certainly government land, and as such, no one is going to come through with a bulldozer to build a mall there ... if the tree-hugging Liberals have their way.

The animals you are hunting have not gone extinct thanks to Environmental and Wildlife protection laws.

One way or another we are all a part of this 'community.' We benefit from being in this community. A few taxes, a few laws, a few social services to level out the playing field. These to me are reasonable, logical, and very worth the price. And all the misspelled Teabagger signs in the world won't make me a "Socialist" for saying that. A little bit in favor of some reasonable Socialism, but not in full. Not the "OMG-we-have-no-personal-freedoms-left" Teabagger definition of the word. This nation is a combination Capitalist/Socialist government and that's a good thing.

Whether you like it or not Ralph, you think it's a good thing too.
Well said!
Looking forward to watching that video. I lived in a cabin with no running water or electricity for a while. The upside was that I paid off most of my debt. The downside was being sick and not having running water, or having to go outside for bodily functions in -30F weather, or not being able to take a shower when my back was acting up, etc...

It was pretty though, coming home late at night and finding my cohabi-tater playing his fiddle, and a kerosene lamp casting shadows on the snow.

Oh yeah... I never had to worry about police protection, or clean air, or some invading country breaking in and stealing my job.
Where was this that you lived?

I know my parents lived in a place like that during their poor hippie days, although by the time winter came the found somewhere else!
I caught "Off the Grid: Life on the Mesa" on Netflix, streamed to my laptop. With no TV in my own off-the-grid life, streaming video is my lifeline. ;-)
Uh, no, you will not have to pay a fee for "being alive" - where ever did you get that idea? You will have to pay a fine (which will be income-adjusted) for not having health insurance. That's what the mandate means. If you have health insurance then you are good to go. No worries about a fee or a fine.

The mandate is a good thing. You may not like the mandate but it protects all of us from "free riders." Protects all of us from moochers and looters who don't want to buy health insurance. And, yes, unless you have thousands and thousands socked away, I am talking to you. Because if you or your spouse or your kid get really sick or badly injured, who do you think ends up paying after you've run through your savings (if you even have any)? I do. And, you know what, if you could have afforded to buy health insurance but chose not to that really pisses me off. With this new law I don't have to be so pissed off.

I've always been amazed by the number of tea partiers who don't have health insurance. WTF? I guess they think Jeebus will provide or keep them well or something. But you know who provides if you or your spouse or your kid gets really sick or injured? Do you know who provides if you can't work because of an illness or injury? I do and so do the rest of the taxpayers in this country.

Look, sensible, responsible people buy health insurance. If you choose not to and have a medical crisis where you rack up thousands of dollars in bills you can't pay, why should I pay for your poor decision making?

That is the problem with libertarians: they care only for their own liberties and don't give a damn about other people's. So, yeah, don't tread on me, Ralph.
Look, sensible, responsible people buy health insurance. If you choose not to and have a medical crisis where you rack up thousands of dollars in bills you can't pay, why should I pay for your poor decision making?

I would/will be all for the mandate when and only when there is a truly affordable public option on the table. And to many of us poor, 'affordable' means something under $75/month. Something akin to an electric bill.

Until then, bear in mind that sensible, responsible people also weigh out the risks when we simply can not afford everything we want or need to survive. Right now, a real health insurance plan will cost somewhere between 50%-100% of what I earn. What I earn is not enough even for a stable home (homeless for 3 years now).

So it's at that point that I do play those odds and not buy insurance. If it's something catastrophic/life-threatening, the ER will treat me and yes, the taxpayers get stuck with the bill. But I'm alive. If it's something minor, I treat it myself as best I can. I've sutured my own gashes. I buy painkillers and RX meds illegally in Mexico.

But it allows me to eek out an existence, which I can just do on my current $720/month. How much of that would any of us give up in order to not have the taxpayers cover our occasional ER bills? Last time I checked I can get ok insurance on my own for around $400/month, leaving me $320/month to live on. Could you live on that? Food, transportation to and from work, work clothes, shelter, toothpaste, toothbrush, soap, shampoo, clean underwear, shoes, a new hairbrush, a new pair of glasses, blanket, raincoat ... did I mention shelter? And trust me, we do pay for it. Each unpaid ER bill piles onto my credit report. Anymore, most employers require a good credit score before they'll hire you, so those unpaid ER bills are further preventing me from getting a job decent enough to provide insurance, which dooms me to more unpaid ER bills, and back, and forth, and back, and forth...

That said, I do agree with a mandate in principle, but again, ONLY if one can afford it. My health or lack thereof does affect those around me. I also agree with mandatory auto insurance, but in reality not everyone needs a car. The theory is, if you can afford a car you can afford insurance.

But health insurance - I wonder if this is what the OP means by "A fee for being alive." It sort of is if that's how you want to look at it. But I would ask Ralph...

@ Ralph -

You Ralph just got hit by a bus. You can be saved by the ER but we have to hurry and we don't have time to determine whether or not you can foot the estimated $250,000 bill. Do we let you die because we don't know if we'll get paid? Or do we treat you regardless?

If you have an ounce of humanity, you'll say we should treat regardless. So we treat you. And guess what, you're uninsured and you can't pay. How then do you propose we recoup our money?

A) We don't. Doctors, Nurses, Medical suppliers should all work and provide services pro bono.

B) The government pays for it all.

C) The government pays for some and requires everyone to chip in for the rest (i.e.; buy insurance).

Because those are your choices Ralph. Plain and simple. You and I pay the insurance company, you and I pay taxes, or we let the bastard die. Your choice.

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